I was reading an article about the UK’s EU rebate when a sentence jumped out at me: “The main reason for this discrepancy was that the UK had relatively few farms, so it got a small share of farm subsidies, which at the time made up 70% of budget expenditure.“
I’ve seen this explanation before, so I guess there must be some truth in it.
What I don’t understand, however, is why the UK’s reaction to this fact was to ask for a rebate.
I would have thought it would have been more natural to either encourage more (or more intensive) farming, or to change the EU to shift its expenditure from farming to other areas.
Either of these approaches would have seen the UK getting more money back without needing to be singled out for special treatment, something which creates resentment against the UK.
But once again the British government decided to leave things as they were, complaining bitterly and getting special treatment.
The Victorians would have been ashamed.